Trailer for Gen Silent (Video with Transcript)
Transcription with description follows.
Images of Boston (I believe) during autumn and early winter.
Lawrence, who is identified in promotional material as a “gay older person who searched to find a nursing home where he could openly feed his partner [Alexandre] and hold hands”, is a Black man in his mid-60s. Read more about Lawrence and Alexandre. He is walking across a park in autumn.
Title: A Stu Maddux Film
Lawrence throws rocks into a lake.
Title: Gen Silent
Lawrence: A lot of people believe that you just live happily ever after and that just… is a myth.
Title: The generation that fought hardest to come out is going back in to survive.
Image changes to Lawrence feeding his partner, Alexandre, who is a older white man in his 80s. He and Lawrence had been together for over 38 years at the time the film was made.
Image changes to Sheri and Lois, an older white lesbian couple living in Boston. Read more about Sheri, Lois, and their history of activism. They are being interviewed in their home.
Lois: People like ourselves, older, are hiding in nursing homes or whatever because they are scared to death.
Bob Linscott, a white man, maybe in his 50s? He works for the LGBT aging project, focusing on Café Emmanuel. According to promotion material for the film, it is the community meal program specifically for LGBT elders and their friends.: It’s incredibly common to go back into the closet again.
Image changes to an older white man, Ralph, being pushed in a wheelchair.
Lawrence (at home, surrounded by photos): You just know when they don’t want you there.
Image changes to Lawrence and Alexandre in the hospital.
Dale Mitchell, Ethos Executive Director. He looks to me like he’s a white man in his 40s.: We’ve heard about homemakers going in, taking out a bible and having the elder pray, and asking for forgiveness.
Lisa Krinsky. She’s a white woman in an office surrounded by files, and works for LGBT Aging Project.: And to be cured. It’s not too late for you to be cured of this. They go back in the closet. She might mistreat me or abuse me.
Image changes to the sun setting over the snow.
Image changes to a close-up of Alexandre’s face. He looks confused and sad.
Dale: They’re so afraid they’re resisting any kind of medical attention.
Image flashes to photos of younger men in uniform and wearing suits & ties.
Lisa: The person was in their mid-20s during the McCarthy era.
Image of a newspaper reports. Headline: Perverts Called Government Peril: Gabrielson, G.O.P. Chief, says they are dangerous as Rads – Truman’s Trip Hit. (New York Times)
Another Newspaper Report: 5 Accused in Korea Quit. All State Department Empoyees – 4 called Perverts.
Closeup of newspaper: Perverts
Dale: The closet was the norm.
Bob: They could lose their job. They could lose families.
Image changes to photos of Lois & Sheri, much younger, in black and white.
Sheri: We were sick, we were considered sick.
Image changes to black and white film of people in a psychiatric hospital. Shows intake, shows someone being prepped for electroshock therapy.
Lisa: People were involuntarily hospitalized in psychiatric facilities.
Image changes to KrysAnne, a white trans woman who was 59 years old at the time of filming. She was diagnosed with terminal lung cancer. You can read more about KrysAnne, but please note that the blog post includes the transphobic and transmisogynistic things her family wrote to her after her transition. KrysAnne is shown in her home with pictures of her family.
KrysAnne: Even electroshock.
[Newscaster from the 50s? or 60s, with images of people being prepared for electroshock therapy.]: The degradation of these sort of people is so complete that their sex satisfaction comes only in being tortured themselves.
Ralph, in his home: I was en route to the nutfarm.
Image changes to black and white photo of a young man.
Lisa: There’s a real distrust of mainstream institutions.
Lois: I would never put myself in danger.
Alexandre: I love you.
Lawrence: He became much more fearful of people knowing he was gay.
Close up of photo of Lawrence and Alexandre together.
Alexandre: You’re not leaving now, are you?
Image changes to Lawrence & Alexandre in the hospital together.
Lawrence: Not right now.
Images of KrysAnne receiving cancer treatments, including her looking out of a window, and receiving an IV drip.
Jenifer Firestone, woman in her 40s, coordinator and caregiver at Dr. Matthew S. Shwartz Hospice and Palliative Care: LGBT elders are more likely than the general population to age alone, because many gay elders have never had children, have not had great relationships with their family of origin. There would be a higher degree of sorts of alienation and isolation.
Ralph writing letters in his home while sitting in a wheelchair.
Image of KrysAnne in the hospital receiving cancer treatments. She’s on a ventilator. It also shows pictures of her family.
KrysAnne: My family was the reason I existed and I lost them all. If they ever choose to catch up before I die, I welcome them.
Image of KrysAnne being wheeled in on a gurney for her treatments, followed by her undergoing radiation treatment.
Jenifer: The LGTB aging issues are an epidemic.
Lisa: There’s a small and growing group of us.
Image changes to a hall full of older people eating at a dinner, being addressed by Bob.
Dale: We’re trying to go into the existing network so they become more inclusive.
Bob: One of the most common lines we get is “We don’t have any gay elders here.”
Image is of a fast-moving train, then focuses on Lawrence riding the train.
Lawrence: If I wasn’t the only person responsible for Alexandre I would have ended my life.
KrysAnne: This is our life.
Image changes to a pride parade. Women are holding signs and shouting and waving. Signs include “The Old and the Beautiful! Senior Pride Coalition”.
Woman shouting: Good to see you. Hi!
Full crowd is shouting and waving back, smiling.
Young man: We’ll be there in a few years!
Image changes to Sheri & Lois’ home. Sheri is taking a chair lift up a set of stairs, singing: I build a stairway to paradise with a new step every day!
Image changes to Sheri & Lois at dinner.
Sheri: We have a whole generation of people who don’t know who we are. That’s really sad, because you’re missing out on a lot.
Dance party with older people, close up on the DJ who is an older person wearing rainbow glowsticks.
Sheri: We know a lot.
Older people dancing at the dance party.
Sheri: We did a lot for you. You wouldn’t be here if it weren’t for us!
More dancing, now with balloons!
Image changes to Lawrence stroking and massaging Alexandre’s hand in the hospital.
Alexandre: Look at how scrawny they are. Too bad I don’t have an open casket.
Lawrence: There’ll be no open casket. There won’t be anything, alright?
Image changes back to Sheri and Lois.
Dale: If we are saying come out and be filled with pride it’s our responsibility to make sure that continues right through their last day.
Image changes to KrysAnne outside her home.
Image changes to Ralph in his home.
Image changes to Lawrence & Alexandre in the hospital.
Title: Gen Silent